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What I almost submitted for this year's Reflections.


There is this moment as you stare at an empty document. The cursor flickers between existence and non-existence, taunting you. Mocking the fact that you cannot help the fact that you don’t know what to write. There is that moment as you stare at a blank canvas and your paintbrush is poised and you’re ready, you’ve been ready, you were born ready; but you’re paralyzed, afraid to move.


And you could spend minutes, hours, days, even years, waiting to fill that empty document, that blank canvas. What you fill it with, now that is up to you.


Now imagine that the world was once like that. A desolate expanse of nothingness, an empty word document, a lonely canvas, just waiting to be filled. But we filled it. We filled it with human beings, with people of all different colors, religions, and sexualities.


When you stand in the middle of a crowded room, does everyone look the same as you? Does everyone stand the same way that you do; do they all have the same mannerisms as you? But you know, that would get terribly annoying, having everyone exactly the same…


In Science, diversity means a multitude of things. It means the variation of life forms in an ecosystem or biome, even the entire planet. It is used to study populations and to see where each member of the population belongs. Political diversity is a social policy that encourages acceptance for others of different backgrounds while multiculturalism promotes ethnic cultures.


But what does diversity mean? Beyond the Scientific and Political fields, what does diversity boil down to?


I think the very first thing that comes to mind is race. Different cultures of various ethnicities and to be quite honest, I think that most people think of that when they hear the word diversity. Truth be told, I believe that diversity is much more than that.


It is not only the color of our skin, hair or eyes, our physical differences; but also our mental differences. Diversity in how we feel, behave, and react. When you walk into a crowded room, there will be people who look very different from you. More importantly than that though, there will be people who think differently than you. That is diversity too, though it is my belief that many people don’t often think of it. The whole world is diverse and has been that way for generations through generations, since the beginning of time, honestly.


So a question is posed: What does diversity mean? The dictionary definition is the state of being diverse; unlikeness. But I have an inkling of a feeling that this question is not the question that I am being asked. So I feel that I must change the question a tad to make it fit: What does diversity mean to you?


Diversity means a world where everyone is different but in my mind that’s okay. In my mind diversity, equality and acceptance go hand in hand.


There will always be blank pages.


Diversity means turning them into the dazzling Prismacolor world that all share equally.

Created: Jan 31, 2012


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